Thursday, January 12, 2006


I guess that Grandma — like most old, old people — has a lot of old, old crap collecting dust in her basement. I was minding my own business this afternoon, bringing all her Christmas junk back down when Grandma whispered to me, "Wait. Wait here, there's something I have to show you." She started moving boxes off this trunk that probably saw the Depression, and who knows what's in it.... Diaries, jewelry, paintings, maybe? I've seen enough Antiques Road Show to know that the contents of this trunk could be my ticket out of this part-time web designer life. I mean, finally, getting something from Mom's side of the family besides Christmas sweaters and osteochondroma.

I still don't know what's in that trunk, cause what Grandma wanted to show me was inside this shit metal cabinet, the kind they store syringes in at a third-world free clinic, next to the trunk. It turns out my grandfather was a coin collector. I don't mean that he collected rare or unusual coins; he simply collected whatever he found on the street, put it in a cigar box, and convinced Grandma that they'd appreciate in value. The cigar box contains sixty nickels, four quarters, and a ten-something Mexican coin, some ancient pieces dating all the way back to that historic year 1983. So, yeah, total value: four dollars and ten-something Mexican cents.

I promised Grandma that we'd waste time and take the coins to a professional numismatist before using them to buy gum or dumping them into a slot machine. It can't hurt... at least not as much as dropping some $50,000 penny into our local Coinstar machine might.